NEW YORK CITY-The Leading Hotels of the World Ltd. has formed the Leading Trust, a real estate investment vehicle to be managed by Leading Hotel Fund Advisors, a partnership between affiliates of Leading Hotels and New York-based Trinity Hotel Investors LLC. The Leading Trust, designed to invest in luxury hotels in order to preserve their distinct cachet, history and charm, will initially focus on acquiring hotels in Europe.

The acquisition of hotels is the culmination of a five-year business plan for Leading Hotels to evolve from a hotel representation organization to a full service provider of products and services to the luxury hotel market sector. With the formation of the Leading Trust, the company signals that it will take a proactive role in protecting its member hotels by providing them access to capital for improvements or major renovations. Operational management for the Leading Trust’s owned hotels will be awarded through an RFP process led by Leading Hotel Fund Advisors.

“The Leading Trust provides a solution for hotel owners to sell or upgrade their properties, while preserving the market position of their hotels,” says Paul McManus, president and CEO of the Leading Hotels of the World. “Owners may not be amenable to bringing on an unknown equity partner or selling to a faceless brand.”

“The Leading Trust fills a gap in the hotel investment niche. In the past, privately-owned luxury properties faced hurdles raising funds in the capital markets,” adds George Ruff, senior principal of Trinity Hotel Investors LLC.”

The Leading Trust offers services for luxury hotels including sliver equity, outright purchase, partnership options, share swaps, asset management and capital advisory services.Leading Hotels, which was founded 75 years ago, represents more than 400 of the world’s finest hotels and resorts. Trinity Hotel Investors LLC is a New York-based real estate investment company focusing on global hotel and resort investments.

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